Photo Tip Friday - How do You Have a Great Photo Shoot?

by Mary Denman

Today’s photo tip is learning how to interact with your subject during a photo shoot for some great pictures. 

While most of you may not do photo shoots for pay, there are some valuable lessons you can learn that will help your photography. Which will also bless others and can also help you with your blogging.

Let’s get started.

This is Warren Johnson. He’s a re-enactor from the 1790's. He’s created this outfit to be as accurate as he can and takes great pride in what he does. As a speaker, he needed some photos to show what he looks like and help convey what he speaks about.

That’s where I came in. When he asked me, I wanted to know what the shots would be used for and what he would look like. That determined a lot about the shoot.

Notice the background? It’s the woods. Why? Because that looks a lot more authentic for the time period of his costume than modern buildings or concrete.

So, after finding this great spot, I started the session. I had him start “tracking”. I wanted action shots so he started moving as he would if he were in the woods hunting food.

While the first spot I chose gave me clean pictures of him, I decided to make it a little more authentic. We walked up the road and I had Warren head up into the forest.

See the interest it adds to the pictures to have him amongst the trees? It changes the lighting and the feel of the photos.

Then, he added some powder and fired the gun a couple of times so I could catch the flame and smoke. (No worries…there were no bullets involved.)

Close-ups are a great idea too since he has so many interesting pieces. Again, it shows his knowledge of the time period.

So, how does my photo shoot help you with your photography?

A) Unless you’re only doing product shoots, learn to interact with your subject.
With people, don’t be afraid to ask them to turn, smile, frown, or jump. Tell them a joke to make them feel more comfortable. 
Even if you’re shooting roses, interact with them. Move around to get a good angle or compose an interesting picture.

B) If something doesn’t work the first time, try again and be patient.
Do you think I got the fire and smoke pictures the first attempt? It took a couple of tries but look at the results! Definitely worth it!

C) Focus in on details.
They can be lost in the overall shots, but can be very interesting in their own right. Again, whether with people, animals or nature, look past the obvious shots to find interesting details.

So, how can this help your blogging? Two ways…

1) As you learn to take good shots, you can use them for your blog. Whether to use to illustrate a point, inspire a post or put a quote with, adding your own photos to your blog brings a sense of accomplishment.

2) Apply points A, B, C, to your blogging. 


A) Interact with the people who visit your blog. It makes blogging so much more fun! 

B) If a post or idea doesn't work, try something else. Be patient. Grow with the people reading your blog.

C) Focus in and listen to what people say on your blog. Your readers can give you great feedback and great ides!

Whatever you do in life requires work and perseverance. Do what you love, then enjoy the journey on the way. That’s what I do with writing and photography and look at where it’s gotten me!

We’re in a conversation because I want to share my love of photography. How cool is that?

So, go grab your camera and find a willing subject to do a mini shoot with! (And let me know how it turns out.) 

Hope these tips help!

Keep on clicking!



  1. Hi Mary,

    Wow! Some amazing tips and shots here! Look at that flame! Thanks so much for sharing.

    Visiting via Friendship Friday,

    1. Thanks for dropping by Poppy! I'm glad the tips help. :)

      You live in a beautiful place! I can't imagine having the Mediterranean views that you do. Have a great weekend!


  2. I agree! I love the flame shot. Have a great weekend!

    1. Thanks Tina. You too! Have a great weekend!

  3. Great tips Mary :)

    Thanks for linking up to the #weekendbloghop

    1. Thanks Claire! I'm going to grab your button once I figure it out! Have a great weekend!